To train and be trained in critical media analysis

by Chloé TRAN PHU & Anne-Claire Orban, Média Animation, Belgium.

Our media society is in perpetual movement: new apps, new content, new uses, new issues and so many educational challenges to take up. How can we take a critical look at the media and the stereotypical representations they convey? How to deal with fake news, disinformation and conspiracy theories?

Média Animation asbl adressed these needs through European projects, training, publications and the development of educational tools. Since November 2021, in order to broaden their offer, a new dedicated platform has been created. It is freely accessible to anyone involved in media education, or wishing to question our media society.

The e-training platform of Media Animation

Modules to be discovered individually or to use with groups

The Media Animation e-learning platform offers online learning modules that allow users to discover and deepen your knowledge of a media education topic independently, or as a complement to a face-to-face course.

Designed to support Media Animation’s hybrid training courses, alternating synchronous and asynchronous learning moments, these modules are divided into chapters and end with a collection of resources to deepen the themes. In each of them, fun tools and innovative methods support concrete learning. Each chapter alternates quizzes, visual examples and readings to stimulate curiosity.

Once the content has been assimilated, teachers and facilitators will find a variety of creative ways to conduct collective reflection in class or in a presentation.

Evolving themes

Online learning methods have the advantage of allowing content updates and to be as close as possible to the questions raised by daily practices. It will thus continue to address immediate issues with pedagogy and originality. For the moment, the following modules are available:

  • To critique the news: 5 approaches to media literacy: How to be critical of the information content circulating on social networks? How to identify and question the propagation of fake news? What social use is made of the news? This module proposes to identify and apply 5 methods of critical analysis of the news media.
  • Conspiracy theories: sources and mechanisms: This module proposes to explore 6 educational approaches related to conspiracy theories and their propagation. They are intended to create debate as well as to provide usable analysis grids.
  • Can we laugh at everyone? If laughter is spontaneous, it is above all based on cultural norms. This module questions the mechanisms of humour. Is irony used to maintain discrimination or to fight against it?

Other modules are being prepared and will be unveiled after they have been tested. This is particularly the case for those accompanying the European eMERGE project.

eMERGE : how to address gender representations in popular media?

The issue of gender equality is crucial today for the inclusion of all in our society. The perception of gender is rooted in family traditions and social context, but also in our media consumption, which can transmit stereotypical representations.

Média Animation has launched the European project eMERGE (e-Media Education about Representations of GEnder). This project is the result of a partnership between Belgium, Greece, Italy and Romania. It aims to strengthen teachers’ skills in media education in order to deconstruct with students the gender representations and stereotypes embedded in their media practices and pop cultures.

What is gender? What gender stereotypes are conveyed in the news media, in films, series, clips, on social networks…? How can they be questioned? How can we work towards deconstructing them through an educational programme for pupils? Which analysis grids and which media to use? How to promote inclusion in a media production?

Many education professionals are confronted with these questions. In order to accompany their work, Media Animation has created several resources dedicated to it. Among them, four self-training modules provide theoretical content, practical exercises and examples about the issues of gender representations in the media. They are currently in experimentation phase and would after that be available and integrated into the e-learning platform of Média Animation. In the meantime, a first look to the draft versions is possible on (in English, French, Romanian, Greek and Italian).


Chloé TRAN PHU, Media Animation asbl

Anne-Claire Orban, Media Animation asbl